5 SEO Best Practices for Video

Video is one of the single most popular forms of content online, so it’s in your best interest to consider integrating it into your website’s content strategy.

Just like with written content, your website can benefit from SEO best practices for video. After all, the more your videos show up in search engines, the more likely people are to find them.

Here are some of the best practices for video-based SEO.

1. Choose a searchable video platform

Choosing a video platform that acts like a search engine is a great place to start with your video SEO. Doing this helps ensure that your video will be discovered by people searching that platform as well as on search engines like Google.

YouTube is the world’s second-largest search engine behind Google, and it’s where a lot of people go for how-to information as well as entertainment. Plus, it’s free.

Vimeo is also a huge, searchable platform. It specializes in catering to brands and individual creators who focus more on video quality than a typical YouTuber might. It starts at $7 per month.

2. Video SEO basics

When you upload your video to the platform, make sure you optimize it with the keyword you want it to show up for.

To do this, integrate this keyword into the video title, the video description, and the tags. You can also change the name of the video file before you upload it.

3. Add an engaging thumbnail image

When someone searches for a video, yours isn’t the only one that will show up. Search engines show people a lot of options so they can choose the one that looks like the best fit for them.

Because of this, you need to make sure your video stands out. Users are drawn to videos with enticing thumbnails so make sure your video thumbnail isn’t just a random shot. At the very least, make sure it shows the subject of the video. It’s best if the thumbnail has bright, engaging colors and a title written on it which can give visitors even more context.

Video thumbnail example

Both of the videos above are about decluttering, but the top thumbnail is far more engaging than the bottom one and has about 600,000 more views.

4. Add a transcript

One of the ways Google learns what your video is about is by “listening” to the audio.

To help search engines understand your video and to make sure they hear your content correctly, it’s best to upload a transcript to your video file. (Here’s a video tutorial on how to do it.)

5. On-Page SEO basics

When website creators make videos, they usually put them on their own website in addition to YouTube or Vimeo. Having a video on your page will help increase your rankings, but there’s more that you should add.

When you publish your video, make sure you optimize the following items with keywords that match the video’s keyword:

  • Image alt text
  • Page title
  • Meta description
  • Subheadings
  • URL slug

It’s also a good idea to paste the transcript below the video. This will give search engines some “readable” text to parse.

If you implement these SEO best practices for video, your content will be discovered by more people. You’ll be seeing results in no time!

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